When James Schramko came across Rob Hanly’s business cheat sheet, he knew it just had to be shared.
How much wisdom, practical knowhow and common sense can be contained in a single paragraph?
Find out as James and Rob round out the rest of its contents in the third and final part of this series.
01:23 – The ideal order of financial growth
07:21 – What makes accrual accounting incredibly valuable
09:15 – Sure, automate, just not too soon
13:46 – Accounting for two-legged expense
17:23 – What you’ve got to do to charge higher
20:25 – How to effectively structure your testimonials
22:50 – Have you got your social proof in the right places?
24:22 – Pain, agitation, solution
26:07 – The sales formula according to Neil Rackham
27:30 – How to avoid getting ahead of yourself
29:49 – People needing people
34:11 – If THIS is at least 75 percent, you’re in good shape
35:29 – Knowing what your fixed costs are, and leveraging them
36:59 – Get everything paid up front
37:53 – Keep capital expenditure at THIS level
39:59 – What’s cheap today and costly tomorrow?
42:36 – Are golden handcuffs the answer?
45:58 – Building a cash-strong balance sheet
51:10 – The thing that shouldn’t dictate your self worth
53:13 – Chasing the goal that’s right for you
53:32 – Start with what’s in front of you
57:56 – The smart way to deal with boredom
01:00:23 – Good reasons to pay attention to your gut
01:04:24 – The user manual every person should have
01:05:40 – When it’s time to simply let go
01:09:33 – The final rapid fire round
01:10:20 – Context and not trusting reflexively
01:13:08 – The wrap-up
James: James Schramko here. Welcome back to SuperFastBusiness.com. This is part three of what I think is a three-part series. We are knee-deep into this experiment here with Rob Hanly. Good day, Rob.
Rob: Good day, mate. Thanks for having me back.
James: Of course, we’re going through your little business cheat sheet that you posted on social media that I saw and said, Rob, let’s podcast about this. This looks fantastic. And in the previous episodes in Episode 761 and 762, we’ve been talking about this list.
We’re picking up today on the third installment, so if you haven’t listened to 761, or 762, please go back and listen to that.
So in terms of where we’re up to in this sheet, last time, we were talking about investing in people emotionally. So what comes after that?
Areas of financial growth
Rob: Yeah. So the next one we’re talking about is a little bit counterintuitive, about the rates at which cash flow, profit and revenue grow. And this has to do with company maturity, right?
The first thing that needs to grow is revenue, that’s always going to grow first in the life cycle of a company. But as revenue starts to grow, you should be becoming more efficient. So we were talking before about swapping for fixed expenses, variable expenses and those things. So over time, as you build more revenue, your profit margin should be growing faster than your revenue is growing, right? As a relative base.
And then finally, as your business matures, your profits should be growing faster than your revenue’s growing. Because ultimately, the goal of a business is to have an asset and put cash in the pocket with it. That’s it. Everything in between is details and whatnot.
And I think at the moment, there’s a big trend where people say, Oh, you can’t get rich, selling your time. Now, I am lucky in that I provide a lot of value to my clients and I have very good clients and I can charge a lot of money for it relative to what other people do. But to my clients, it’s a drop in the ocean.
The reason for that is, my time is my asset to sell, and I can make that cash come in really quick. But then I have a bunch of cash. Now I want to take that cash and make it make more cash. And it’s that whole focus that at the end of the day, whatever that asset is, whether it’s time, the business, money, anything, how do I make it get more cash flow off that asset? And how do I make that rate increase faster than my asset increases?
James: And where do you sit in terms of reinvesting to scale versus taking money out to invest somewhere else?
“The biggest mistake people make is they don’t understand risk exposure as a business owner.”
Rob: Ooh, yeah, that’s a good one. So the first person who really got into depth with me on this was a guy called Jeff Schneider. And Jeff is a real smart bloke, and he was talking to me about the biggest mistake people make is they don’t understand risk exposure as a business owner.
So I know a couple of business owners in Australia. And they say that it’s a lot more challenging as an owner in a business to get a loan than it is as an employee. And they never understood that. They were like, Well, how is it more risky? But the truth is, they’re owning a business, centralizing the risk.
So you need to take some out, take a little bit of money off the table, whether that’s a retirement account, or whether it’s just buying into other businesses, diversifying your risk, at the same time reinvesting.
So a conversation we had yesterday is, once you’re around the 15 percent profit margin, as you get above that, beyond 20, obviously, there’s exemptions to the rule and models and all this stuff is, if you’re 20 percent, you should be putting money back into the business, I believe, right? Once you hit your own personal goals in terms of finance, stop taking money out and grow the value of the business at the total enterprise value.
Because if you have this system that can scale – and there’s a calculation behind this called self-funded growth rate – then you should be doing it. You’re increasing asset value. So that’s my thought on when should you reinvest, and when should you take? So take a bit of money off the table, invest the rest in growing.
James: Yeah. I mean, it’s interesting as we’re in a pandemic, at time of recording, where some businesses have been wiped, and the owner hasn’t taken stuff out and left it. Other things to consider, too, and of course, you should speak to the relevant parties, whether it’s your accountant or financial advisor, whatever.
In Australia, at least, by putting some money into the superannuation, you can reduce the amount of tax that you would pay on that, versus later in the business. There’s differences between the entities you hold it into or that you distribute to.
And then of course, some companies as they get much bigger, can start taking advantage of being in different countries, you know, like your Google, and so forth.
James: It’s a fascinating thing in itself.
Rob: Yeah, it’s huge.
James: And it’s certainly, that topic has not gone away.
At the minimum at least they’re paying people, you know, staff etc. And that money is going back into PAYE tax. But one of the beauties of having a business it gives you quite a lot more flexibility in terms of when you pay your tax. And, you know, like, you have to do it quarterly in Australia, for example.
And then you can distribute stuff at the end of the year, versus when you’re an employee, you’re paying the tax on the fly all year long.
James: So you’ve got not much leverage there. And then, of course, yes, balancing the amount you want to have as a wage is going to dictate whether you get any benefits from the government. It also will dictate if you can get a loan, if you’re into that sort of thing. If you want to borrow for a personal thing, then you’re going to need to show an income, etc. It’s harder to get that loan.
James: Right. So let’s talk about prioritizing cash collection consistently. I feel like we touched on this in terms of timing for when we invoice, etc. We talked about credit terms versus getting paid up front. Were there other things around that topic?
“Cash today is worth more than cash a month from now.”
Rob: Yeah. So some of the other ways is understanding, even on credit terms, everything from factoring invoices, like how do I get a cash in my bank today? Because cash today is worth more than cash a month from now. This is that idea of the time value of money. You know, what point?
And I always use the same experiment with my clients. When people are looking to talk to me, I say, look, if I gave you $10,000 today, or $100,000 in a year, what would you prefer? All right, what about $10,000 today and 50,000? And 10 and 20? And eventually find that point where they go, Oh, no, I wouldn’t wait for that.
And that just helps people understand that there is a point at which money in the future is more valuable. But man, money today is, you know, I’d take a discount to get it today.
So for example, when I work with my clients, they have the option to pay me up front if they want, and receive a professional discount for a year’s worth of advisory. And that’s okay. If they do that, I will happily give them a professional discount, because they simplify my business. I don’t have to follow up, I don’t have to have any overhead. I don’t have anything. It just, it’s done.
And I’m always happy to give that, because cash is better than no cash. That’s it. It’s a little mantra, isn’t it?
James: It comes up a lot. Obviously, with agencies, I’ve converted people to get paid up front. But with memberships, there’s always this monthly, quarterly or annual billing.
James: There’s pros and cons. You will usually discount an annual payment. However, you’re getting a year’s worth of retention. You’ve got one billing cycle each year.
The downside is you’ve got to resell it a bit harder. You have to remake the sale versus when you have the monthly. But I’ll tell you something I’ve discovered by accident. When the pandemic hit, people who are on longer-term payments didn’t have the opportunity to just pull the pin and stop.
Like, if they’re paid out till August or September, October or December, then they’re just still in the program. Whereas all monthly is just unhitch. In a lot of my clients’ situations. That was something we observed. So longer-term customers can give you more consistency, even though it’s not a consistent pay. It’s up to you, the business owner, to be disciplined with that money.
The value of accrual accounting
Now, there’s different ways people account. Like, they either account for the cash now, or they actually have – I’m not sure the technical name – is that accrual accounting?
Rob: Yeah, accrual.
James: Where you allocate it to yourself each month ongoing. So you’ve got to have, like, a trust account where it’s sort of dispersed over time in your books.
And one mistake we do see people make is they get the money, they blow it, and then they’ve still got to deliver on the service. But their service actually gets a little bit sloppy because they’re stressed out and they’re focused on the rat wheel of trying to get another customer. So just watch out for that trap.
Rob: Just as a sidebar, I recommend that everyone moves to accrual accounting immediately. Even if your business is really cash billings both ways, still use accrual, because it gives you that perspective of I’m matching my revenue and expenses to the time in which they’re incurred.
And it just gives you such better clarity about your business. And then obviously, you offset the realities with the cash flow statement. If you’ve never done it, guys, just do it.
James: That definitely gives you a more accurate picture of what’s actually happening. Like in my business, I might make sales for my annual event. I’ll get 100 sales in 24 hours for my event. That will bring in $100,000. Then I’m going to pay, a few months down the track I’ll pay the event venue. That’d be 45 or $50,000. So there’s this big lump coming in, there’s this big lump going out.
If you just do my business on a monthly, on the month where the 45 came out, you’d think, oh, you know, our profit margin is not that great this month. Or if we only look at the month when a hundred came in, you’d think, Wow, what an amazing business.
James: But it’s a trap. You want to just make sure that you’re allowing for the time period. I love that.
So, moving on from that, we’re sort of switching gears into automation.
Automate, yes, but not too soon
James: Automation is great. But automating too early embeds dangerous mistakes. Ooh, I like this one.
Rob: Yeah, this one to me is, you know, I’ve had a bunch of businesses that I’ve owned in the direct response space. And you know, in the online world, we talked about Ontraport before. So you set up these Ontraport automations. And I think the mistake is, somebody builds it and it’s done. And then I never have to look at it again. And they just let it go.
But what happens is, the longer you’re in an industry where you’re interacting, interfacing with customers, solving problems, all these things, you realize that you made a bunch of mistakes early on. Now, if you go into your automation setting, internet money, mailbox money, whatever you call it, you might get a little lazy and you start leaving a lot of money on the table.
And it’s about this idea of, before you automate, I think I took this from Justin Brooke, which was test, validate scale. And I like the idea with automation. Test, validate, automate. Same idea is, let me do it once. Let me validate those results. If they’re good, continue doing it, automate it. If they’re subpar, don’t automate it, make it better.
And we started using this in one of the businesses that I was owner in. I partnered on it to bring the marketing and sales expertise. And we set up this series of campaigns. It was like, evergreen launches, sales promotions, entry-level products, backend products. It was quite comprehensive.
We had products that had 15 different modules that were hours long each. It was 160 hours of content. Like, this was big professional stuff on a needed basis. But by making sure that we didn’t automate immediately, and then just leave it, but instead, we built it piecemeal and improved it.
I can tell you, our first sales campaign was okay. Second sales campaign was pretty good. Third one, incredible. And if we just automated that first one, with no changes, we would have left so much money on the table. And I think that’s what I mean by dangerous mistakes.
The other part of it that’s dangerous is, sometimes you have a product that you don’t realize is costing you money. If you’ve automated it, and you’re not keeping that finger on the pulse, like we talked about with the giraffe story of Graeme Hart, if you’re not keeping a finger on the pulse, these things will cost you money.
So just make sure you’re going through once a month, once a quarter, checking those automations. What am I not doing right? Where is it broken? Or there’s this idea called pen testing. You can essentially take that concept, of someone’s coming in to try and break it, and get someone else with fresh eyes to tell you where your baby sucks. I think it’s a great idea.
“Bad habits are bred in good times and good habits are bred in bad times.”
James: Yeah, a couple of things. It reminds me of the saying that bad habits are bred in good times and good habits are bred in bad times.
James: Your story just actually reminded me – when I started buying ads on Amazon, the marketplace to sell my book, I did automate it for a while there. It was losing money each week. And it just kept draining my AmEx card a little bit, until I got it balanced out. I did a bit of peel and sticking and optimizing and putting some negative keyword phrases and then I got it to be returning a positive ROI.
James: And I’ll give some credit to Allan Dib, who’s got the 1-page marketing plan. He put me on to that advertising platform. If you have a book, it’s good to advertise on the Amazon platform, and you can actually make a profit on the front end.
James: Which is amazing.
So that’s a good one. It also reminds me of that story of some guy who went around to a lady’s house, he says, show me through your pantry. Okay? Take me down shopping with you. Let’s go and buy the stuff. Let’s go back to your house. Now cook it. Show me what you’ve prepared. And then he went and made the app where people could source goods and get recipes and so forth.
So it’s like that minimum viable product version. I think it’s talked about in The Lean Startup, the book. And sometimes you’ve just got to do the stuff manually, and then automate it. Friends of ours, like Dean Jackson, have the nine-word email. And that is an amazing email to put in a cart abandonment sequence, right?
James: It’s a perfect spot to put it. You got to do a couple of those manually in the beginning to get the hang of where you should put it and how you would automate it. And then I still like this idea of semi-automation. When those things go out, I still manually answer them. That’s a hybrid of automation plus human.
Rob: Yep. Yeah, I agree. That human element, just as a quick side, is so important. Because the truth is, when you start a business, or even if you’ve had the business for a while, your map, your understanding of the landscape, is always improving. You’re always understanding more about the features, the terrain, the details.
You cannot tell me that someone who has been running a specific business for 30 years doesn’t have an infinitely greater amount of information than someone who’s just started the same business, same industry. If that person who’s just started or is nascent in their journey tries to automate that the same, it’s not going to happen. So embrace the hard part, you know?
The gym I used to train at in Texas, we were always talking about embracing the suck. Just embrace the suck for a little bit, but you’re going to gain so much data that you can leverage.
James: Nice to think about. I was carting bricks as a laborer for a while there and using a shovel, thinking, this is giving me an appreciation for what a fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay might look like. You know, what can you expect from people and what is a difficult job compared to what I have now. I have an easy job compared to what that was.
Overhead is human
So it sort of leads into the next one: expense walks on two legs.
Rob: Yes. I took this one from Felix Dennis, who was the founder of Dennis publishing. He has a book called How to Get Rich. And it’s probably one of the most bastardy honest books on making money.
Everyone tells you it’s easy, it’s fun, it’s great. He has a section which is like, you’re going to have to work so hard that your friends hate you, your partner despairs, your enemies fear you. Like, that’s what it takes to be stupidly wealthy.
And it’s okay not to want that. But it’s not a fantasy. It’s not easy. It’s going to require some real ticker. And he’s got some great advice in that book, and I think it’s a great reality check for everyone who, we’ve mentioned this in the last episode, the overnight success, overnight riches, it’s super easy – push one button.
Felix is a bit like, Nah, that’s bullsh*t. This is what it looks like. And he has this great line, which is that overhead walks on two legs. Expense walks on two legs.
It is very easy as a business grows to want to get lazy, right? I think we all have this desire as humans, right? Our goal is to consume more energy than we put out, so that we survive. That’s very natural. It’s biological. Then we want to hire people. But that expense comes with a big price tag.
“If women get paid less, then why don’t all companies just hire more women?”
And I had this very interesting chat with my sister a little while ago, and we were talking about the wage gap. I was talking to her, and she was explaining to me this perspective I’ve never heard of, and I loved it, which is that there is the natural argument people make is, well, if women get paid less, then why don’t all companies just hire more women?
And she made this point about the overhead that’s not accounted for in management. And I love that. Because if you have six people and a manager, if that’s your rough structure, the more people you hire, the more managers you need. That’s how it works. So it’s not just that you’re going to hire one person, but you’re also hiring one sixth of a manager for every person you hire. That’s how it roughly works.
So always asking yourself, with your employees, before you hire them, can I do this with technology? Can I do this myself? Can I do this with a partner? Can I find other ways to not incur that expense until I know that it is a really profitable path?
James: Yeah, I love it. Small teams are good. Like, as you get to a larger team, the complexity and communication can be very, very bad. Like, in Amazon, they talk about being able to feed a team with one pizza.
Rob: Yeah, I love that rule, the pizza rule.
James: I sort of rolled that into having pods of three. We have three people in little teams. And that way, if one person’s away, the other two can sort of fill in. You know, they do half each instead of a third each. And they can each take turns at sort of leading that little pod.
But we used to have this sort of discussion around when we had salespeople and then sales managers: is the sales manager selling or not? And that’s really when you’re talking about the sales manager’s wage.
If they’re not selling, if they’re only managing the sales team, then you have to divide their wage across the whole sales department. Because they’re not a direct source of income for their role. They’re indirect; they go through their sales team.
And that’s often more powerful because it’s very accountable to have that type of role. And when people try and pay their sales manager and have the sales manager sell plus manage, it’s pretty easy for the sales manager to be a bit selfish and try and cherry pick the good deals and stuff. So many dynamics around this.
But when I sit down with my clients and we look through their expenses, you can bet almost all the time, the biggest expenses are going to come down to marketing, or salaries. Like, wages and overheads.
Especially Western companies. It’s very easy for them to rack up hundreds of thousands of dollars per month in wages. And they just get fat, and they get big and they start to get lost. And then usually they start hating it and just wanting to get rid of everyone. “I just want to get rid of everyone and start again, it was easy when it was just me,” they say. This is really common.
So remember that you have to try and peg an income back to each role, each function. That’s why when we’re talking about in the last episode having KPIs and metrics that everyone can contribute to, you can actually start working out, you know, what is your revenue per person in the business? What is each person contributing to growing that revenue? And it’s a good one.
How to command higher prices
So let’s talk about communicating value to command higher prices.
Rob: Yeah, I’m really excited about it, because there’s a couple of lines here which are all sales oriented. This is where I cut my teeth. You know, I was a door-to-door essentially, you know, in the supermarket. Not supermarket, shopping center sales guy. That was, like, my first real eat-what-you-kill kind of experience.
And I’ve learned through that and in my own following experiences that you have to communicate to someone the value. Now, if I go to some stranger on the street say, Hey, man, like, here’s my fee. Pay it to me – okay, well, that fails to list off a copy thing that we spoke about earlier.
So let’s say I go to the right guy, you know, he owns a business and the right size and the right condition, okay. And I say to him, right, Here’s my fee. Okay, but why am I going to pay that? Okay, well, let’s talk about, you know, what are your problems and what pain can I relieve for you? What might that return look like? How’s that going to show up in your financials? How is that going to impact in your life?
And by communicating the value that you provide to their life, or rather, Here’s the problem. Here’s the solution. Look at how much better your life is, or before and after, that’s what I mean by communicating value.
But it doesn’t just stop there in the transformation. It’s also about the details. How much time and energy did you put in to come up with this solution? How many people have you worked with already? What kind of technology is this based on?
And there’s a bread brand actually here in Portugal that I love: Gleba Bread. And the owner has gone back and studied certain agricultural methods for creating bread, all the once “forgotten methods”. It’s a great story. The value is in the quality. I mean, this bread is incredible. The value is in the story itself of, Oh, look, I have this special bread, I can tell a story.
Because these things are communicated, all the way down to, where does the wheat come from? I’ll pay a higher price. The value has been communicated. Versus going to the supermarket and saying, Hey, I’ll buy a loaf for a dollar. No thanks. And that’s what I really mean, is you must communicate that value.
James: I had someone visit my webpage yesterday and said, oh, wow, this is all new and improved.
Rob: Smart guy.
James: Because I had put some effort into design, and I’d put some effort into the sales copy. Two areas I focused on, because I want to communicate the value. Like, I know I can help someone if they fit my criteria, but I have to be able to help them see that. It fits really well with my definition of selling, which is, like, it’s the process of change from one situation to a better alternative situation.
And I think our main role as a business owner or marketer or salesperson, is to create an environment where it’s very obvious to the person they will be better off. And that is done via communication. So, such a good point.
Really sweet spot for me, too. My oldest son just closed his first sale in his brand new job, and he’s very excited. And yeah, he’s been talking to me recently about how he’s just realized that a lot of the things we talked about when he was a kid were preparing him for this moment in his life.
James: He’s been inducing this sales knowledge, like taking it in, almost subconsciously, in everyday conversations, and me sort of passing on the benefit of all the things I’ve read, but without him realizing that he’s sitting on this superpower and it’s just unleashing now, which is so exciting.
Rob: That’s great.
James: He’s a good communicator.
How to structure your testimonials
Let’s talk about the best testimonial structure.
Rob: I love this one.
James: Before and after mechanism.
Rob: BAM. I do not remember where I got this from. Now if you’ve been listening to this podcast, you’ll know James and I both like to pay respect to where we got an idea from, where it came from, because we stand on the shoulders of giants, really. I wish I could tell you where this came from, but it is great.
What was it like before? Oh, you know, before I met Rob, the business was struggling. You know, we were making millions and millions but we were barely putting any cash out. But now, the business is still making millions. I’m putting nearly a million in cash in my pocket every year.
The immediate response for someone is like, Oh, how’d you do that? What happened? You’ve created this contrast and someone wants to know, what was the bridge? And that’s when you introduce the mechanism. Because you’re not selling the mechanism. You’re saying, Look at the transformation. Oh, by the way, here’s how it happened. That feeds into curiosity.
So when you ask someone for a testimonial in my basic structure, you know, it’s like, what was it like before? What’s it like after? What was the mechanism? But the only other thing I like to put in there, which is, what were your doubts?
You know, like, when I first met Rob, I wasn’t sure. Like, it’s, you know, it’s an expensive fee. But he was well supported. I was a little nervous, but he guaranteed his fee. And he said he’s never had to give it back. So I was in a tight spot, but I recognized the value. And now boy, am I glad I did it. Bang, bang, bang. And it’s all because I hired him.
And when you have that structure, when you ask those questions, you can do it through text or verbal or back and forth, whatever. It just makes such an impact on the structure of your testimonials.
“Pick testimonials that are representative of your audience.”
James: It makes sense, because it’s more or less the demonstration of how someone will be better off. And a few key points around this would be, pick testimonials that are representative of your audience.
James: If you’ve got a guy that looks like Rob, let’s let’s say I’ve got Jesse Elder on my website and then Rob Hanly comes along. Jesse’s saying this or that, and then Rob will go, oh, this guy’s a bit like me, you know? He looks a bit like me. So we want to find demographics and representative people.
Be careful of testimonial in terms of the word. Some people put that on their site. I don’t like to use the word so much. It might be more like, let’s hear from our clients, or whatever, or success stories, etc.
And we used this similar structure for a whole podcast called Sales Marketing Profit, Taki Moore and I. He had this great framework, and it was pretty much like, where was someone at when they sort of came to us? What was their problem? What did that problem mean? And like, how bad was it?
And then what change happened? Like, what was the new result, and what things caused that? What was the prescription? What advice would they have for someone else about to go through the same situation? That’s usually a very prescriptive call to action. That podcast was very successful.
Have you got testimonials in the right places?
People loved that it was real people, too. It’s just hard to beat that level of proof when you’ve got actual people getting transformations. And so that’s why we layer all over our website, even on our cart page. If you don’t have a testimonial on your cart page, then put one there, too, because that’s a great place to put it.
Rob: It’s huge.
James: And also in the shopping cart abandonment follow-up, I’ve got a video of someone who joined and got an instant result, and he just sent me this unsolicited video which I’ve now put into my autoresponder sequence.
Rob: I love it. I love it. There’s a really good point there of the testimonial on the cart page. So, one of the deals that I was building, we ran traffic to a page. So we sorted out, great sales page, was working fantastic. But then massive drop-off on the cart page.
And you know, you put in best practices, but you always got to doubt them. And I noticed that the cart page, exactly this – it didn’t have testimonials. We popped them on, and I think it tripled the completion rate. And then you can ask yourself, right? Who’s left and why are we getting so many people there? What’s the issue? Where have we failed in communicating value?
But just seeing triple in that result, who wouldn’t like three times more money?
James: And it helps if it’s a result that that person on the page wants. Say, pick one that works.
This next part, I’m really, you know, I think this is fun. The best sales copy structure: pain, agitation, solution, so the PAS formula.
Rob: Yeah. This is a classic, right? There’s a lot of stuff. I put a video on Instagram a little while ago talking about you know, market sophistication and stages of awareness and all this stuff. A lot of the time, you just need someone to use a structure.
What’s the pain? What’s the effect?
Pain, agitation solution, because it shows you that you understand where they’re at. What’s the pain, what’s the pain point? And then you talk about the agitation. How is this affecting them? What’s making it bad? Dan Kennedy used to say putting your finger in the wound and wiggling it around to make it hurt.
But it’s really just saying, like, I get it, you know? You’ve gone through a divorce, and that was really hard. And now you’re worried about your future and you’re not ready to start dating again. You’re broken, and all these things, and that’s making you doubt your self esteem and not showing up at work and your relationship with your kids and all these things.
Someone who reads that can say, Okay, you’ve taken the time to understand not just what I’m going through, but the implications of that.
Because this is really, you’ll agree with this, I think, that most people when they come to you to solve a specific problem, they’re not solving it to solve that problem. They’re solving it to solve the ongoing effect, the upstream or downstream impact of, I’ve got low self esteem. That’s really not what they’re trying to solve for. They’re trying to solve dating, or they’re trying to solve the ability to provide whatever it is, and that’s when you shift to the solution.
And I think what’s great is, if you do a great job of creating this context, the solution is a very natural response. You can say, Listen, there are a lot of ways you can address your self esteem in dating. But what I found is that there are really three things you need to know. And you start describing the solution, the quote unquote, what I got for you. And once you learn these three things, here’s what I’ll do for you. And if you want to get it, just click here and purchase.
And it’s such a natural dialogue. Now, some people are obviously very unethical, and they really manipulate and abuse this. And I think that’s a really key point to bring up.
You and I are pretty strong on ethics. We were talking before about the importance of representing your office properly, being accurate, not making people feel like they’re being taken for a ride, respecting your customer, not overdoing it.
I believe that this is the same thing: pain, agitation, solution. Be respectful. Think of yourself like a doctor. Hmm, this is the issue. Does it hurt when I press you? Okay, here’s what we should do.
The Neil Rackham version
James: Love it. Look, it’s so similar to the formula that I grew up on since about 1993 was SPIN Selling.
Rob: Neil Rackham.
James: Yeah. And you literally used the word implications, which is the I in there. And it’s pretty much the same. It’s just got the S part in the beginning, I suppose, which is the current situation. And that’s just meeting people where they’re at and really showing that you know where they are. Because if you want to help someone be better off, it’s good to know that before part.
And this was really critical for me when I was at Mercedes-Benz. Because if you want to sell a car, you have to buy the car they’ve got from them. So that’s their before situation, is what they’ve got.
And then you need to know, obviously, whatever they’ve got now is not serving its purpose anymore. There’s a problem. And the implications of that problem is pretty much the agitation part. So the problem is the pain, implications is the agitation, and the solution is the same. The N is needs solution. It’s a bit awkward, but same formula.
I’ve used that for many, many years in all sorts of communications, whether it’s telephone, sales pages, training calls. It’s just such a simple formula that you can roll around. I would suggest anyone listening to this read the book, SPIN Selling.
If you’re selling any high-ticket items, the most current up-to-date researched version of which Neil Rackham wrote the foreword for of a sales book is The Challenger Sales method.
Rob: Great book.
James: Yeah. So that’s probably enough on that topic.
James: We could do a three-part series on just that.
Are you getting ahead of yourself?
James: Start with what you’ve got. Solve what’s in front of you. What’s in front for you?
Rob: Yeah. So there’s probably a little misspelling.
James: Just modifying your document here.
Rob: So the idea behind this idea is similar to effectual reasoning, which we spoke about before. But it’s also about understanding gating solutions, and about being realistic with where you’re at.
So I had a coffee with someone this morning, I’m looking at expanding my consulting into different countries. And there are som/e countries which I recognize, based on what’s happening in the world right now, this pandemic economic crisis, that my skill set, my knowledge base, my framework can be very valuable. But I can’t speak the languages.
Now, if I’d gone there with just one pitch, and this is all I’m going to do, bang bang bang, that’s just stupid. But I sat down there, I was like, I’ve got these tools. And I’m here and I’m just open to what’s coming up. And then that presents the gating problems, the barriers, the friction points that if you try and jump 15 steps ahead, forget about it. Just solve what’s in front of you.
I know that everyone responds to goals differently, but this is almost the difference between I’m going to feed 6 billion people, and I’m going to research kelp. That’s it. Just, you start with the first thing. The 6 billion people’s theNorthstar, but maybe you’re looking to kelp and seaweed, and maybe look into an alternative. But just solve the problem in front of you with the resources you have.
There. I mean, that’s it in a nutshell, but it’s really about reminding yourself that some people are motivated by big giant goals. And while I find them useful as a Northstar, the entire period of my life, James, where I pursued a big, hairy audacious goal and I fought for it, they gave me white knuckles, a lot of frustration, a lot of stress.
And when I sat back and I started going, okay, just, where am I now? What’s next? I’m walking on the path. Where am I now? What’s next?
James: I think it can create a lot of anxiety in people. They set huge aspirations and they’re just constantly missing them. We talked about that with OKRs the other day. So it also is probably good to inform someone in the software game, you know? Like, they don’t want to get feature creep before they start rolling out the first version. You just go lock it in sometimes and just roll with what you’ve got, or it’ll get ahead of you.
And it also speaks to perfectionists who need to have all their ducks lined up in a row before they move the first thing. It’s just better to get in motion. Because one thing that I’ve really discovered, over and over again, is that whatever you start with is not where you’re going to end up.
I’m not doing exactly what I did when I started online. I started, and then I iterated and changed and moved. I really hate the word “pivot”. But I guess you’d say, you will change direction a few times, because change really is the constant. So just start now. Solve what’s in front of you.
Everyone needs support
In line with that, you’re talking about getting a support network and speaking to them often.
Rob: Oh, yeah, absolutely. It’s such a critical thing. Entrepreneurship, being evaluated or whatever it is, you don’t do it in a vacuum, you are going to get stressed. And if you feel really stressed – yes, you need to manage your team and give feedback and all these things – there are going to be days where you just want to implode the whole thing. Just be done.
And you need people you can just vent to. It is healthy to vent, get that sh*t out of your system. Sometimes you verbalize it. And as Emma Pratt, who owns a great clinical Nala hub on the Northern Beaches, she talks about this idea of name it to tame it, and it is incredible.
The research backs it up. The woman who was the basis for the psychologist in the TV show, Billions, has a book called Market Mind Games, she talks about this as well, as when you label an emotion, when you verbalize it, when you write it down, it loses its impact, because you’ve made it tangible and structured.
So if you are going through business, first of all, it’s about getting rid of those. Let’s process those together. And the second thing is, there’s stuff that we just don’t know. So try and do it all yourself.
Craig Ballantyne, I’ve mentioned him before, he’s been a great resource for me, he’s helped me a lot. And Matt Smith, who we mentioned before, all these different people that we draw help from, they’re our support network. And it’s really important to get them both on a personal level and a professional level.
James: I’ll have to invite Matt Smith on this podcast.
Rob: Oh, you need to.
James: I’ve had almost all the other people you’ve mentioned, from Craig Ballantyne right through to Justin Brooke, on the show already. But Matt Smith would be a great guest. So Matt, if you’re listening to this, give me a call, buddy.
Rob: I’m going to text him. We’re going to get him on this show.
James: I think it’d be great. He actually helped me a lot early on when he was, he used to be a domain flipper. He used to buy and sell domains. I still sell domains that I bought 10 years ago from my original seed of what I learned from him. So there you go.
Yeah, look, I think it’s important to talk about. Guys, especially, you need to talk it out. I think women are wired to gossip and talk and socialize. Some guys like to sort of bottle it up a bit.
James: And I surround myself with people who will let me vent. Especially, I’ve got a surfing buddy, we go out sometime, we paddle out, and my main goal is just to make him laugh with my crazy stories of how chaotic things can get.
And as chilled as people might think I am and as calm as I am, I think that that comes from being able to let stuff out. I’m the kind of person that just wants to deal with it immediately and let it out. I don’t want it to build up like hot air in a balloon and float me away. I don’t want that toxin, you know? I just want to suck it out and get on with it.
Especially in my field, because I’m talking to a lot of business owners who have major problems.
Rob: Yeah. If you’re worried about your shit, you can’t solve theirs.
James: I’ll never forget, I used to have this kinesiologist once who died of cancer. And I think she probably just took on everyone’s crap and just didn’t have her own release. So if you’re in any kind of field where you’re dealing with a lot of poison and toxin, you need an outlet.
And you talk about having a therapist in the previous episode, and that’s a good investment, so probably not much to expound on that one.
Rob: The only thing I would just make a quick side note though, is look, even therapists have therapists. Psychologists have psychologists. You mentioned before, like blokes bottle it up, and I think that’s true, especially Australian males, we know for a fact that it’s a real part of our culture. There is strength in sharing.
The therapist that I always recommend to people is a guy called Niels Barends. He’s a virtual therapist. You can look him up, Barends Psychology. But even if he’s not the right fit for you, find someone who is. Give it a crack. You’re probably going to, like anything you start out, feel a little ashamed, like an idiot, like you’re doing it wrong. That’s okay. Totally normal.
The dividend’s as you said, James, it’s getting it out. It’s just processing it. Maybe it won’t be a therapist. Maybe it will be yoga. Maybe it’ll be surfing. You know, I spoke about the value of surfing for dealing with sh*t. It just works. So yeah, that’s probably the only part I’d add to that.
James: It’s definitely changed my life more than anything, ever. I had a good episode with Nam Baldwin, he talked about NEAT – setbacks are normal; expect it, accept it, and then tidy up mentally. That was the acronym.
Rob: I like that.
James: Spoke with Pete Shaw, recently. He’s great with the mindset stuff, about getting little hinges that swing the big doors for you, knowing what type of person you are. Like, if you’re a pressure person and you don’t set deadlines, you’ll probably never get anything done and wonder why.
James: I thought that was really interesting.
I also believe Marissa Peer’s work is quite good in terms of the more traditional sort of therapy stuff that actually gets good results. So there you go.
Build up your recurring revenue
Oh gosh, this has to be one of my favorite topics. High recurring revenue, 75 percent plus. Bingo.
Rob: Yeah. Plus fixed costs leverage, plus cash billings, plus Capex on the 10 percent is the definition of heaven. Now this is sort of like an aspirational goal. I think there are limitations within industry and model and all this stuff. But if you can have 75 percent of your business as recurring revenue, right? If you seek that… And that can be payment plans. It can be payment plans, and then you can add a membership site, which is what your expertise is, James, you’ve got stuff coming out on that.
James: Well, let’s look at my business and see if it qualifies.
Rob: Okay, what’s your percentage?
James: Recurring revenue?
James: It’s about 99 percent.
James: The non-recurring revenue things we have is a Maldives trip once a year, my live event once a year, and now some standalone products on SuperFastResults. But that’s just early days. I’ve started, and it’s not perfect yet, but it’s in the nineties.
Rob: Awesome. Okay, so you’re in the 90s, which is great. Now the reason, as a sidebar, as to why that’s so important, is sustainability and predictability. It’s lowered risk, it’s diversified risk. It just makes it better.
James: How about 100K per month for over 10 years straight?
Rob: Killing it.
James: I virtually never hear of that.
Rob: Yeah. And that’s because I think most people are chasing the quick fix or the quick change. And some of it is knowledge. Maybe no one’s ever said to you that this is a great idea. But now, you know. If you’re listening, you can pursue it.
James: I have a lot of books, but they’re not in my garage.
Leveraging fixed costs
Rob: My books in my garage? Of course, that’s where it came from. I think the next one is the fixed cost leverage though. Because recurring revenue is good, but if your recurring revenue is tied to variable costs, you’re not getting ahead. You’re just scaling the same cancer, the same problem. This is where fixed cost leverage is.
So I know that you’re a big fan of 10XPRO, right? It has that basis built in for that. It’s a fixed cost.
James: Yeah. It’s like 300 bucks a month.
Rob: And if you go and have, say, the simple math, say 10 people paying you 30 bucks, it’s still 300 a month. If you have 30,000 people paying you 10 bucks a month, we’re talking about massive leverage. I think a lot of people don’t understand the importance of, these certain expenses are essentially an asset that you’re renting.
And how do you get a return off that? One of the things I get people to do is look at their P&L. I’m happy to give this one away, it’s connect each expense to the revenue it generates directly or indirectly. And if it cannot be there, for acquiring a customer, or retaining a customer, what’s it doing there?
Rob: What’s it doing there?
James: In my case, my biggest cost is wages, which is more or less fixed.
Rob: Which is awesome. Then you can leverage it, right?
James: I only have small variable costs, like, you know, if a few extra people listen to this podcast, my Amazon S3 bill might go up $3 for the month. But you know, my website fees are more or less fixed. My subscriptions are more or less fixed.
I don’t run much paid traffic, except for the Amazon one. However it’s cash flow positive. So the more I spend, the more I make on that one. So it actually tracks pretty well in terms of feeding that front line. So I’m happy so far.
Cash over credit, all up front
Cash billings, we don’t have any credit terms in my business.
James: Everything’s paid up front.
Rob: If you can do that in your business, it is such a win. And I think seeking to find ways to get people to pay you faster as close to cash billings as possible. Whether that means bribing the head of the payments department of your supplier, sorry, your vendors. So you say, hey, look, here’s a Starbucks gift card. Here’s an Amazon gift card, really appreciate anything you do to move it ahead, and getting paid on their company credit card.
James: And some smart companies, they say, pay your bill by this date, you can pay this rate; pay it later, you pay extra. I’ve introduced that for a few of my agency clients where they do have big customers. If anything, I actually get paid in advance. Because if I sell an event, I get paid before the event.
Rob: So you’ve got what’s referred to as a negative cash flow cycle.
Rob: You know, negative numerical cash flow cycle, because you’re getting the money well before it goes out.
James: I sleep better at night, honestly.
What your capital expenditure should average
Now, CapEx under 10 percent. I’m interested in what that means.
Rob: Yeah. So CapEx is capital expenditure. Essentially, what are you doing in property, equipment, assets that you’re acquiring to generate revenue from? And what it really means is that if you’re able to keep your capex that low, just 10 percent or less, it means you’re getting better and better at what we talked about earlier, turning your assets into revenue.
And this is it. This is the whole point, you keep coming back to this.
James: What’s that in my business?
Rob: So yours, yours will be interesting, because it’s software primarily, it’d be the key part of development, if anything. But you might have zero capex. You’re not really developing things except the training products, but they’re done in a short period of time.
James: So that’s me buying a course.
Rob: No, because that would probably fall under accounting standards as education, training, development. By CapEx, for software, would be the development of an internal-based tool for use within the company. So if you built your own project management system from scratch…
James: I’m an off-the-shelf sort of a guy.
Rob: Honestly, as a quick sidebar, 99 percent of things, just do it off the shelf. Like, if I’m looking into tracking potential deals in real estate and business acquisition here, because I want to buy or partner on businesses which are distressed, which means a lot of people start talking to you.
I originally kept track of this with a piece of paper and a pen. I tell you, it just grows and gets too big, because a lot of people end up being nothing, but you’ve just filled up a piece of paper. Go use Trello or Airtable or an Excel spreadsheet. It doesn’t matter. Just, someone’s already solved that problem. Don’t try and make it fancy.
James: Almost everyone I know with their own bespoke in-house, custom software, especially for memberships, they say the thing owns them. They have to hire a chief technical officer. They’re spending a hundred and twenty grand a year for someone to run this beast. It’s costing them a fortune when you can buy stuff off the shelf.
I do have a couple of custom tools, right. I’ve got a membership modeling calculator. I’ve got an effective hourly rate calculator. I’ve got a 16-word sales script. But my friend Dave Wooding makes those things for me. He’s just a genius. And I help him out a little bit with some coaching. So it nets out.
Rob: Net positive for both of you.
James: Yeah, not a big expense.
Rob: Yeah. So, next one.
James: So I’m in heaven.
Rob: You’re in heaven. So should we talk about equity, then?
Cheap today, costly tomorrow
James: Equity’s cheap today.
Rob: And expensive tomorrow. Now this is an interesting one, right? There’s a little nuance to this, is when you’re starting a business from scratch, you don’t have a lot of capital, typically. So you’re trying to, oh, how do I get this funded? And the truth is, don’t. Just go and sell as much as you can. Sell the idea.
I think it was Dane Maxwell of the Foundation talking about getting people to pay for the development. But it still comes down to sales first.
A lot of people try and solve that problem with equity. Now, I take equity positions, right? Now, I know you and I differ a little bit around philosophy on these things. But I like equity positions. It’s skin in the game, keeps me focused more than royalties might at times, depending on the business.
But for the most part, the context is, if you’re just using equity because you don’t have cash, it’s going to be very expensive in the future. If you’re using equity to get someone aligned, that’s actually beneficial. But knowing the difference between those two things is, don’t just go get a partner to give away half your company for no reason. That’s silly.
“The 50/50 deal is the curse of newbies.”
James: Oh, my god. The 50/50 deal is the curse of newbies.
Rob: Oh, I’ve made it before and I regretted it.
James: I’ve done it. I did it so often in the beginning. I set up all these 50/50 deals; most of them didn’t work. The one that did work was very expensive. I’d send half a million dollars off to Sweden for my first proper membership, you know, for four years, because I went 50/50. And in hindsight, I didn’t need to. When I switched, I tripled my profit by adjusting that arrangement. So it was awkward, and it was a mistake that I was able to rectify. And I’ve certainly saved a lot of other people from it.
But the most common reason for people to do a 50/50, if you want to boil it down, it’ll come down to lack of responsibility. They’re secretly hoping the other person will do the work, or they’re just not taking responsibility to do the hard thing that you need to do. In my case, the hard thing would have been to research software solutions and to just set the first funnel up. I paid heftily for someone else to do that for me.
Rob: I think there’s a really good point on that, which is responsibility. And there’s a methodology that I’ve used for people before, which is this idea of slicing the pie – equity earning, equity investing. If you don’t know about equity, don’t give it away. If you don’t understand it, it can be partitioned out over time in line with hitting key targets. Don’t give it away, just work through it, and then learn about it before you give it away.
And the exception to that is skin in the game. You know, there’s a reason that most turnaround guys get a piece of the company, is because without them, the company’s dead. That’s a good deal. You know, I’d much rather have 50 percent of something alive, kicking and growing than 100 percent of something that’s about to die.
James: Yeah. I mean, I see those shows where people go and pitch their company and they need investors. I’ve never needed an investor for any of my businesses, which is good.
And even with the rev share model that I’ve got, I don’t have to put money in anymore because I’ve got distribution, and I’ve got knowledge. And I can grow them a bigger business than what they bring to me, and they get 90 percent of the upside, which is great. So it’s whatever works.
Bringing out the golden handcuffs
What about teams? When there’s a team there and you’re trying to golden handcuff a top performer? I see this one a fair bit. Clients ask me about it all the time. It is one thing where I differ from Ricardo Semler, the way I run my business than what he’s done. But a lot of the other things he’s done, I like and have introduced. So what’s your take on that?
Rob: I think it’s contextual. I spoke with a woman many years ago. And she was quite high up in a major financial institution in Australia. And she was actually complaining about dissatisfaction as a result of those golden handcuffs. I mean, the handcuffs are a reason. But I think this is the kicker, is there are always arguments for and against. And I think it comes down to the person and the context. Now if I give you, James, equity in, say, the investment vehicle that I set up…
James: Thank you.
Rob: Oh, there you go. Guys, this is not a verbal contract. If I give you that, I want something in return for that. But there is that risk of resentment,
James: Like ownership, you’re going to want to own a piece of it.
James: You could end up with a job-like function…
Rob: Pound of flesh.
James: That might not appeal to me.
Rob: And I think that’s the issue, is that people, again, this is I think the value that you and I provide as coaches to our clients, is clarity in a confusing and volatile and uncertain world.
A lot of people don’t understand the difference between ownership and a job. And if you give them equity, they don’t necessarily get that. Or if you are given equity, maybe the person giving it to you doesn’t understand ownership versus a job. And there’s value adds.
James: And there’s the classic one like I’ve been offered a lot, as I imagine you are. People are often offering their piece of their business to do it, but almost always, they’ve got pretty much nothing there. And so, the big deal with equity is you’ve got to be able to realize that there’s a lot of illiquid equity going around.
James: I do have equity stakes in some businesses where I know I’ll never get a cent. It’s illiquid, no one’s going to buy my piece of equity. The business might not survive or be sold, etc. In fact, I own a bit of equity in a pest control company that I helped a guy out from about 10 years ago. They gave me some equity and I don’t think I’ve even spoken to them for about five or six years.
Rob: Have you ever received a check from that equity or no?
James: No. I know another guy who got a slice of equity as an advisor to a company, and then the company just quietly shoved their assets out into some other little business vehicles, sold off the whole thing and just shafted him.
So equity’s an interesting one, you’ve got to be able to get the money out. It can be a massive compromise for whoever’s getting the equity because it does tie them in. It also can be a little more complex in terms of legal structure and paperwork and liability. That’s one major reason why I avoid it.
Rob: Yeah, you’ve mentioned that.
James: Yeah. So I’m going to be doing a book on revenue shares. I suppose as my own podcast, I should mention that to my audience. I’m going to do a book and a course on revenue shares. We’re putting a course up on SuperFastResults, but the book, we’ll just go into more detail. I’m going to dredge through all my stuff, make a brand new course on it, and talk about the pros and cons.
But from what I’ve seen from the discussions going on – as you know, I’ve been educating myself on all the other ways people do it – I think most people haven’t figured out how to get around the difficult parts, and I feel like I probably have.
Is your balance sheet cash-strong?
Now, let’s talk about, build a cash-strong balance sheet. It’s pretty obvious to me in our discussions we do like having a strong-cash position.
Rob: Yeah. So this is about, you know, essentially liquidity. Or, are you able to pay off your liabilities when they come through?
James: And how long – this is a common thing – how many months’ worth of expenses should we have on hand?
Rob: I’m a big believer that it depends on, again you hear me – context, context context, right? Like, a construction company is going to need a much different…
James: Aw, come on, just give us the answer.
Rob: Ah, I can’t, mate, I can’t. I‘d be doing you a disservice.
So here’s the thing. There’s some rules of thumb. If you are a software company, you can probably have six months. I think six months is, in a software company, based on margins, six is good.
James: The pandemic’s been going for six months.
Rob: Yeah. Now imagine that your software company dried up.
James: Yeah. I have a client whose software company…
Rob: Dried up?
James: Get this, his software is for trade shows, to help point of sale lead collection.
Rob: Oh, that hurts. That hurts. Does he have a cash-strong balance sheet?
James: I forgot to mention this in the last episode, but you remember you were talking about how you were planning, and I think it was February?
James: Really early on. The same for me. I think it was the first week of March. I said to him, we have to do something radically different because this is not going to change for a long time, and people don’t realize that yet. And he’s now built webinar software for virtual tradeshows.
Rob: Love it. So for every one of his clients who isn’t going to a physical trade show, they still need to sell stuff. So he’s created a really interactive, feature-rich webinar platform for trade shows.
Rob: So that actually ties back in, again, we mentioned this at the start of the first episode 761.
James: Good reference! You could be up for future gigs with that level of talent.
Rob: I got you, mate, I got you.
James: I have to look it up.
Rob: So it’s about understanding that a lot of the data and the ideas here are contextual in that they’re like a galaxy. It’s a bunch of stars, and you want advisors. Like, the reason I have a yoga teacher is because she sees things I don’t. I can’t read the label from inside the jar; I can’t do brain surgery on myself, as you said.
So when it comes to things like this, is it’s that effectual reasoning, going back to start with where you’re at, where you can solve those problems. You helped him identify – here’s where he was at, here’s what’s coming. What problems does he need to solve?
He didn’t start out saying, I’m going to make a webinar software for trade shows. He realized that the tide is shifting, the context has changed; he was ruthless in his assessment of his operating environment. And then he adapted. I just can’t beat the drum on that enough.
I did a briefing in, must have been March, I think March. It was called Adapt or Die. And this has been done to everything from the British Portuguese Chamber of Commerce to Steven Kotler’s audience.
I’ve moved it around to a couple of different people, but the thing is, it always comes back to, what is happening? What is going to happen? How do you position yourself? And the best way to be able to do that is to have fuel, which is cash.
James: The big lesson in that for me was, that client was paid up for quite some time, and they didn’t have the option to just panic and pull the pin and disappear. And the help I gave him has been critical.
And a few months later, we reviewed. Because, you know, as we’re recording this, we’re just about in August. So we said, you know, how was our predictions? How was our theory? He said, unbelievably accurate. It’s like, exactly what we thought. Because we knew.
I think because you and I, we have a global audience of our catchment, contacts all around the place. We do get a lot of data points that other people miss, especially if they’re just looking at their local news station.
I thought about this today. This is a bit profound. I was surfing at my local beach here, and my other friend who lives just one suburb away was surfing his local beach. But all year long, my beach, the waves are about twice as big as his waves, because of the direction my beach faces. So even being one kilometer apart, (or for our friends overseas, like, less than a mile apart, right?) we can end up over a year having completely different experiences and completely different skill sets.
He’s used to surfing crowded out, small mush. And I’m used to surfing bigger, more sort of intense waves. And I’m just one beach along. So that’s a guy in the same country, same language, same currency. Almost everything the same except for that one thing, and the difference will be significant.
So imagine, you know, this guy in his little cocoon, he gets this outside perspective of what I’m seeing. And we nailed it, and it was a good situation. I like to have a year’s worth of expenses available.
Rob: I love it.
James: In fact, I want to be at the point where I can just stop working, and that’s it. And I feel I may actually be close to that, but I definitely do not want to be looking for the next customer to pay for my food. And, you know, people get themselves into that shape.
And if you’re in that shape right now, you know, I used to be a little more hand-to-mouth when I was an employee. Like, all employees spend every single cent of their wage as it comes, or just beforehand. Like, the average person in Australia has a debt of several thousand dollars to a credit card. So almost everyone’s living behind.
“Pay yourself first, spend less than you earn, get a bit sensible.”
James: So, pay yourself first, spend less than you earn, get a bit sensible. I mean, we’ve already talked about so many things that can help you in terms of the cash flow timing, in terms of the business model, what you’re shooting for, in terms of, expense walks on two legs, etc. Right.
James: Well, let’s just keep going.
Does THIS dictate your self worth?
What about, your balance sheet isn’t your self worth?
Rob: Oh, this is a Keith Cunningham classic. Keith Cunningham was a guy who, I went to a course of his two years ago, read some of his material. And those who aren’t aware of him, his background was, he pops up at Tony Robbins’ Business Mastery. And someone once said to me, Look, Business Mastery and Tony Robbins? Eh. Keith Cunningham? Worth the price of admission. I thought that was a pretty strong recommendation.
Keith is a former capital raiser in the world of cable television. He then got into real estate. He did a couple of turnarounds. He’s just an old grizzled veteran, with a lot of knowledge, and a lot of insight. And as I was sitting at this big event, he was talking about how he had this giant net worth. It had been, I think about 100 million or something, apparently, through all of his assets and whatnot.
Bottom dropped out of the Texas real estate market. Foom, the guy’s worth negatives. And someone was talking to him. He’s like, Yeah, but like, what do you do when you’re bored of your business? It’s not fun anymore. How do you decide when you want to sell one of them?
And Keith just turned around with the greatest response. He said, Look, I’ve tied my self-worth to my balance sheet before. And it made me consider some very permanent solutions to some very temporary problems.
And it just stuck with me. The purpose – and we touched on this later, which is business is for money. Yes, it’s nice if you can have some intellectual stimulation. But in the words of Keith, when the price of mutton is greater than the price of wool, sell it. When you get more from mutton than from wool, just sell it.
It’s not about you and your identity. If you have a buck in the bank, a billion in the bank, that’s not where your value is derived from, in the intrinsic metaphysical, if you will, sense. You’re a human, that’s all the value you need to have. You’re alive. Congratulations, you have value. Let’s just sit with that. Your balance sheet is a measuring stick.
James: How does this sit with the common goal that I hear, that someone needs to make $10 million a year?
Rob: I think 10 is just a nice round number because we’re on the base 10 system, you know? If we were on the base 12 system, everyone would want to make 12 million equivalent.
Picking the goal that’s right for you
And there is something magical about the ones and zeros. I don’t know what it is. But you and I have spoken about this. I wrote about it in my annual letter. It’s, pick the goal that’s right for you.
I spoke with two guys yesterday, clients of mine, and we were talking about an exit. Part of what we’ve been doing is growing them and setting them up so they’ve got a nice healthy balance sheet, healthy cash flow, healthy operations, so they can sell for a brilliant multiple, and that’ll be worth a lot of money to them.
And they were talking about this deal that’s in front of them. And you know, I want to respect their privacy. But the key point behind it was, one of the guys told me his personal goal.
I said to him, listen, if you take deal X, in five years, I want you to remember that you took deal X because it was aligned with your goals. Maybe you didn’t make as much as you could have. Maybe you didn’t become a billionaire on the cover of Forbes. But your goal is X. And if you’ve achieved your goal of X, take it. That’s it. Take it and feel fulfilled that you decided on this.
Now I remember when I was 23, I was driving across the Harbour Bridge, actually, on my bus, on the way to work, when I last had a job. And I was reading this book about setting big, hairy audacious goals. I was like, Oh, I’m going to have a net worth of $150 million by the time I’m 30.
That was a very audacious goal. Very sexy-sounding goal. And the reason I got there was I somehow went from 75 million, thought that wasn’t enough, and went to $150 million. Here I am, a graphic designer, pulling a number quite literally out of my ass with no understanding what it would take to get it, and no understanding of how to really make that jump.
And then I just was like, This is my goal, and I just, I became obsessive about it. And of course, I never got there, because I didn’t know what I was doing. It was ridiculous. And I think that’s the thing, is you’ve got to ask yourself, if your goal is 10 million a year, that’s okay. But do you understand what it takes to make 10 million a year? Do you understand how to get that?
And then, is the tradeoff worthwhile? If your goal is to have a really nice life with your family, to be able to provide for everyone, figure out what that costs. Just put the numbers down. What do I need for rent? What do I owe mortgage? What do I need for food? What do I need for holidays?
Just actually delineate the numbers, and then ask yourself how much of that shift’s just fantasy mimetic desire based on what you think other people want? Because I’ll be honest with you, James, there’s a lot of stuff that other people do, I don’t care about.
It would be wonderful to own a Rolls Royce, that’s a very cool thing. I don’t want one. I really do not want a Rolls Royce. I reckon it would be cool to have one. Not going to pay the money for it. So I think that’s where it comes down to 10 million. If that’s your goal, why? What are you going to do with it? Then you know, why and why, the five whys we talked about in the last episode, 762.
James: Wow, that’s good. I’m impressed.
Rob: I got you guys. But that’s the point, is figure out, as you and I have discussed, the goals that are yours. Because as you said to me, and I agree, a lot of people are chasing other people’s goals.
Rob: Chase your own.
Doing what’s in front of you
James: It’s like, you know, that do what’s in front of you thing. When I was 23 is the year I went from $35,000 to $78,000 a year, and got my first sales job at BMW.
James: Within a year, I was the top salesperson in Australia. And that’s all because I had a baby coming along. That was a classic scenario of I definitely didn’t have a year’s worth of expenses up my sleeve. It was panic stations.
James: And it was hands on deck, I just had to do it. I wanted to quit that job a few times, because it was very, very difficult. I remember, this is the classic, I was about 38 days into it. And my boss, who was this Dutch guy and like, an ex boxer, and he used to be the top sales manager for a couple of years, actually, he said, Son, have you had a day off yet? And I said, No. He goes, you can have one off next week.
Rob: No. Geez.
James: It was tough. And also when my baby was born, they wouldn’t give me the day off for the birth.
James: But I took it anyway. Like, you only have a baby every now and then. In my case, like, only five times. But I’m going to be there. Like, that was when I really had to stand up. And I risked everything to have that day off.
And even then, when I had to pick the baby up from the hospital, they wouldn’t give me a car that fitted my baby seat, so I had to go and stop off at the baby seat place on the way and pick up new fittings to adjust because they gave me a hatchback and it didn’t have a parcel tray, so I to get an extension thing. And like, they were just hard asses. It was tough.
Rob: There’s a good point in this, James, which is that – and this is what we’re talking about in knowing your goals – you sitting up and saying, you know, my baby is more important, this birth is more important than this job. And there is a weird part to it, when you are very clear about what’s important to you, people respond to you. And people understand that, you know, this is just how it is.
And maybe you call it a frame game or whatever, but if you take the time to inwardly reflect and consider and ask yourself, what’s important now in my next 3, 6, 9, 12? What’s that going to be? You will have the self esteem to know that you’ve done the work to figure it out, which allows you to act in a way that builds more self esteem and has self respect.
And to me, it’s just like building a case of wins, because you’re doing it from place of view. Whereas if you go on picking other people’s goals, even when you achieve them, you don’t really care. It didn’t really do anything for you. Figure out what you want.
I feel like these things are very much outside the scope of my role. I haven’t studied psychology. I’m not a therapist. They’re just sort of views and lenses I hold, but I do find it to be consistent and true.
What to do when you’re bored
James: Nice. When things are going well, you’ll want to meddle because you’re bored. You shouldn’t.
Rob: This is just it. Do you know how many problems I’ve stopped people from creating by saying, Are you bored? And they say, Yes. I’m like, good, then don’t do anything. Sit on your hands. Don’t just do something, sit there.
Because business is such a wonderful tool for people who have a dopamine dependency, or serotonin dependency. We want to get more, we want to go more, we want to go more. There’s a reason that entrepreneurs…
James: Probably why people overwork because they just get in love with the game of just going harder, staying longer, hustling and grinding. It becomes a thing unto itself.
Rob: Yeah. Yeah. So when you’ve got that, you have to understand that if you’re bored – and this is, again, we go back to the inward reflection part of things – if you’re bored, go get your entertainment elsewhere. You know, I think that’s like, the next line.
“Business is for money. Get your entertainment elsewhere.”
James: It is. Business is for money. Get your entertainment elsewhere.
Rob: That’s it. When I realized this lesson – again here, respect to Keith Cunningham, because this is where it came from – is, I’d be unscheduling things on my calendar. I basically said, what is my entertainment? What do I get fulfillment and joy from that has nothing to do with business? Live music, movies, going to theater, whatever – put those things on the calendar.
Because then, when there’s that moment of like, Oh, I’m so bored, maybe I’ll fiddle with it. Don’t fiddle. Wait till the live show. And I cannot tell you – it’s oblique, but it works. Don’t make me problems.
James: That cartoonist that has a few books, he also talks about that. You can make your money one way, and you can have your fun another way.
James: For me, it’s pretty accurate actually, because I just like to surf. There’s no money in surfing. And I do my coaching calls, I do create products, I do my podcasts, I’m head down, focused on it, I turn up, I do the work. But then, you know, when it’s done, I’ll go and watch Formula One or entertain myself somewhere else, and it’s totally fine. You don’t have to blend them together if you don’t want.
Rob: I play Call of Duty with another entrepreneur here. I think I’ve talked about this to you already, but I play a version of it called Plunder. And it’s just an opportunity for us to hang around, hang out. Sometimes we talk shop, sometimes we talk life, but it’s just an easy way for us in different areas to catch up.
Other times I’ll go for a walk. When art galleries are open, I go to art galleries, but when you work, you work and you’re done.
James: In the car dealership for many years, I used to play Gran Turismo at night as my release.
Rob: Love it.
James: Then I did Call of Duty when I had my online business.
James: And I don’t game anymore, which is interesting, but I surf.
Rob: New outlet.
James: So I’ve just substituted, but it’s something completely separate, to switch off, zone out, flow state type thing.
Understanding your gut
James: This one’s good. Listen to your gut when it hints at bad news. Ignore it when it’s excited.
Rob: Ooh. Alright, so I’ve had partnerships with people where I would journal about what I was experiencing, or I would make notes, and then I would ignore it.
Like, Oh, don’t go into business with this person. There’s something about this that feels off. Offset by, Yeah, but I want to make money. And I would come back to those notes after everything fell apart, and I’m like, Oh my god, why didn’t I listen to this gut? You make that mistake a couple of times, you go, right.
The excitement is exciting, because it’s the, what could be? But it’s like a similar thing to, you know, when you hear the rustling in the bushes, the cost of running away 100 times is far lower than being killed by a tiger once.
James: That’s a good one. That is a good one.
I remember, I had to let a sales manager go once, because he fell in love with a girl and just completely blindsided him and distracted him. He made really poor decisions, he cut corners. And it was really difficult because he was a good friend of mine. And years later, I was able to work with him again. But it was, you know, the excitement just overrode everything that would have been screaming inside him, saying, this is not a good idea.
Rob: Oh, yeah. So, there’s nine different kinds of love, is what they refer to, and one of them is called porneia, which is the desire to consume the other person. And that’s essentially what you’ve got to watch out for, is when do you experience porneia? Ignore it. But really, when your gut says something is bad, trust it.
And this is a bit meta, but I can’t remember who wrote it, The Gift of Fear. You remember that book? Gavin de Becker, I think it was.
Rob: But he talks about basically is, your gut’s an early warning system, and the value of listening to your gut. And I think there’s a second layer to it, which is that when you build a relationship with your gut where you trust it and you respect it, you listen to it, even if you’re wrong, again, it’s an esteem-building behavior.
I respected my gut because it told me this is a bad idea, not out of fear. As in like, you know, this is the other thing people say, Oh, fear is bad. No, no, it’s good to face your fears, but also face them from a mile away from the bushes, not from beside the bush. Like, you don’t have to be the hero, the hero ends up dying in real life. Just survive.
James: It might be too odd, but I’ve really paid a lot more attention to the gut in the last few years, partly because when I did my DNA as part of a series we did on this podcast, I discovered that I might have a gluten intolerance. And it led me to changing and modifying what I eat, and it’s a lot to do with the gut. It was explained to me that gluten as a protein is like, if other proteins are like cat, mat, hat, then gluten is like supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, and it’s a bit hard to process.
James: I’m now really aware of the food I eat. If I eat something or drink something, I can actually feel it in my body. Because I don’t eat processed food anymore. I don’t add sugar anymore. And I don’t eat gluten for the most part, except for the Italian doughnuts at my local shop, which come from Italy and they don’t give me any reaction, which is crazy. I’ve also built up my gut strength through eating oats and green things and whatever.
So I got this amazing client who advised me, and it’s been years now. But I’m really big on this gut thing. I’ll go to the extent that it’s not just a feeling. In my case, I have a strong knowing. I have a very strong knowing. I just know things. And I don’t know how, if that falls into paranormal or it’s a very strong intuition.
And I have a super acute sense of things now. I don’t know if it’s because I surf or because I get good sleep, or whatever. Or if I’m just full of sh*t. Or if it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. Whatever it is, I’m just feeling extremely tuned in now compared to years ago, as I’ve paid more attention to it.
Rob: Mate, I wanted to make two quick notes before we jump on the next one. First of all, there’s a bloke out of Hollywood, Bill Silva, great guy, and he and I have discussed this many times.
He brought it up with me a while ago. He’s like, what do you think about intuition? And he knows Matt and a few other people. And there’s this kind of interesting question to understand how someone who sits on the scale and saves the world. You say, What do you think about intuition? Does it play a role in success?
I think what you’re talking about when it comes to knowing is first, quote unquote clearing the pipes, getting that gut-brain connection, whatever you want to call it, but it is. Like, intuition is the ability to rapidly slice information at a speed faster than the conscious mind can process. It’s just, done, got it.
The manual everyone should have
And that goes back to trust. The sort of ancillary point of that is the value of keeping a manual for you. So I have a manual for Rob, how to handle your Rob, and you would have a how to handle your James.
James: Oh, I’ve got a life sheet.
Rob: There you go, okay. Same idea, right?
James: It’s a Google document, which has a tabbed index that has everything in it. And I’ve done a course on that on SuperFastResults and in SuperFastBusiness, as well, to my life sheet system.
James: For a long time, I’ve kept a single note system of everything. It’s even got a surfboard register.
Rob: I love it. These are the things that everyone has to understand – we are different. Whether it’s your goals, or what you can eat, or who you spend time with. Some people will be like crack cocaine for you, but the ability to cure narcolepsy for someone else. You’ve got to know what works for you. And then be open to adapting.
James: Taking responsibility.
James: It pops up again.
Rob: We’ve come back to that a few times, haven’t we? Yeah.
James: Fear is about responsibility too, according to Rhonda Britten.
So, nobody knows everything.
James: That’s straightforward. Like, the more I know and learn, the more you realize you don’t know much at all. It’s just, you become more aware. There’s just so much.
When you’ve just got to let go
Rob: Just let go. Just let go.
James: Yeah. There’s that Japanese culture thing again, the culture of letting go of things that we can’t control.
Some people are actually a**holes.
Rob: I think that’s really important. There is this belief that everyone deserves a second chance, that everyone is good, but the truth is, in the population distribution, some people are psychopaths, some people sociopaths, some people are destructive.
James: Like that cat killer guy.
Rob: Yeah. That guy’s an a**hole. That’s it. Done.
James: My mentor taught me to start people on zero, and let them build up to a ten.
Rob: Interesting. I got a piece of advice from one of my teachers. Rob, you get frustrated because you think that everyone should be at 90 percent 90 percent of the time. You should start expecting 90 percent of people to be at 10 percent of the time, 10 percent, all the time.
And it is about letting people earn because that’s first of all poor boundaries. If you project onto someone, say, Oh, this guy I’ve never met before is a superstar, well, that shows that you’ve got really poor self respect and poor boundaries because you’re not easing into this, and you’re trying to share boundaries too quickly.
The other part is that you’re opening yourself up extremely vulnerably to people who are a**holes. Now I’m sure you’ve dealt with them. I know you have.
James: Oh, have I met some. Oh my god. I mean, the typical client I had when I was in Mercedes-Benz is a 60-year-old business owner who’s used to getting his way, and some of them can be really difficult.
And a lot of them are unethical. Like we’d go to a corporate golf day and they would cheat. And the way people play golf is the way they live life. In fact, you can see, they’re steamrolling their competitors, they’re lying with their invoices. They’re trying to jag their way through the game of life.
Rob: There’s a great point there, which is that you get to decide the rules of how you live, how you interact with things. Now, I’ve walked away from things before where it didn’t go my way. But I can say, you know what, I checked my boxes. I put in the effort. You know, I sought to be better. I got involved with mediation, or whatever it was. I’ve done all the things I could have at that time.
And maybe I’ll look back and with new tools, new skills, I could have done better. But I walk away with my head held high and say, that’s how I want to live my life.
James: Well, I like the idea that the past no longer exists. So you might as well let go of beating yourself up about it.
Rob: Yeah, I like that too.
James: It’s gone. That’s an Adlerian philosophy.
Rob: He was of The Courage to Be Disliked, right? The inspiration for it.
James: One of my favorite books.
Rob: That’s a good one.
James: Whenever I find myself in that, because we all have these things in the past that we sometimes think about, and we don’t really need to keep projecting it back into the future, because it’s gone. It just doesn’t exist. It’s finished.
Rob: That’s good.
James: None of this ultimately matters. I like that, I think you said it in an earlier episode, like, we’re all going to die anyway, right?
Rob: Yeah, we are. This is the thing, all these things kind of tie together, right? Is, you know, let go of the past, that Adlerian philosophy. Nothing ultimately matters, which is almost nihilistic in some ways.
Inversely, I know this is ironic, but I have a tattoo on the inside of my left bicep of the uroboros, which is drawn from a piece of philosophy by Nietsche, talking about, you get one chance to live your life in the right way. And then you’re going to have to repeat that an infinitesimal amount of times. I’m deeply paraphrasing here.
James: That’s like, automating too quickly.
Rob: Yeah, right.
James: Whatever you do on the first run’s going to repeat.
Rob: That’s it. That’s it.
James: One culture has a saying that your dressing gown doesn’t have coin pockets or whatever. It’s like what they bury you in. So you can’t take it with you.
Rob: Yeah. Yep. I’d say that’s true. But really, yes it is. The only thing that matters to you is if you, okay, so basically this is a quick therapy, psychological point is, an experience occurs factually.
Relatively, well, let’s not go into Newtonian quantum physics comparisons, but a chair moves. I think about the chair, you think about the chair, then I react to my thought, you react to your thought. And then I have an emotional narrative, and you have an emotional narrative. Ultimately, just the chair moved. That is the uneditorialized fact. But it’s our thought about what happened that we emotionally react to.
So when we say all this doesn’t matter, that’s what I’m saying. It doesn’t actually matter. Your narrative matters to you, but even that doesn’t matter. We’re all going to die. It’s going to be alright. Don’t stress it.
Now, in rapid fire…
James: Let’s do a rapid fire round now.
James: Sell using gaps.
Rob: I think we’ve covered it with pain, problem, done.
James: Nail first, scale later.
Rob: Similar to automation.
James: Similar, yeah.
Find what people buy before, during and after, to find new channels and products. This is like the upstream, downstream.
James: We talked about that, finding out who have got your audience and getting in front of them.
Rob: Think about it in the frame of stage of life. I think that’s really key, is we often think, okay, James’s audience is buying coaching from James. Well, maybe they’ll buy from me. And look, maybe some will.
But it’d be much better to say, James, I’ve got this ripper piece of software, like 10XPRO. Do you think your audience would like that? Because they’re in the stage of life of building a business. Like, it just makes more sense.
James: Got it.
Contextual advice and not trusting reflexively
All advice is contextual. There you go. You did get it covered of.
Rob: Oh, I did.
James: Just the context. I like that context and relevance. These are just so big. When I ever say the same thing as you, I was just warming up before, but when people ask me questions, I’m always trying to put my in their shoes, and I’m trying to empathize with them and see their situation, and answer, knowing everything I know that’s going to be the most relevant thing for them to be better off.
Not to be reflexibly trusted. Yeah, this is the authority bias. Someone comes along who you look at as an authority, they say do X, you go, okay. That’s a reflex.
James: That was my problem with a book I previewed the other day. In the first chapter, he’s talking about a lady called him up, and they wanted him to drop everything and go over there and do some training. And he said, Yeah, I’m on it. And I lost respect for him at that moment.
James: Because I thought, how subservient is that?
James: Bootlicky, you know?
Rob: You’ve got to have your standards. You know, something that I’ve always loved is, you’ve seen Pulp Fiction, right? The character of Winston Wolfe. Winston shows up. He’s like, Look, here’s how it’s going to work. And even though it’s kind of annoying, is Quentin Tarantino’s character, he’s a bit of a pain, he asks questions. And while he’s a pain, I kind of respect that. Because yes, we’re in a problem. Yes, you’re the expert. But you shouldn’t still reflexively trust someone.
Now Winston has great self esteem. He says, look, you know, I’m here to solve a problem. I believe this is your problem. If you want, I can just leave. That’s okay. I guess, like, okay, no, no, cool. But it’s that good push back.
James: A little bit like my mentors. Start people on zero.
James: And someone could get a 10 instantly, like within minutes or whatever, but if you start at zero, and then you work way up, it’s like when you switch on a recording for this podcast. Our microphones start at zero, then we start talking and it starts monitoring the levels. So it can be instant. It doesn’t take years or whatever to build up.
But this guy was so big on integrity and trust, and he didn’t let many people in the inner circle. So it was very interesting to observe that.
Rob: I love it.
James: So the whole thing about this advice being contextual, and not to be reflexively trusted, you added this little thing, including this. It’s like the punch line for the whole series.
Like, everything we’ve talked about, you know, your mileage may vary. You got to take the bits that work for you. You might strongly agree, you might strongly disagree, you might have no idea what we’re talking about. Rob does use some big words. I’ll give him that. And it’s okay.
I’ve enjoyed getting different perspectives on things that I’d partly been aware of, fully aware of, or not aware of at all. I learnt a new acronym in the previous episode for assessing threats. I definitely already used the one about the market and the offer and the copy a couple of times. So it’s really been fun.
Let’s finish this up
And I think a good way to finish up, firstly, let us know, where can we go and find out about Rob Hanly?
Rob: Yeah. The best way to get in touch with me is on Instagram, which is @robhanly. But if you want to have a little bit more of a dig, you know, there’s not much about me on Google other than three podcasts with James.
James: Just trust me, it will be all over Google. We’re going to own Rob Hanly for life.
Rob: Well, I own the domain.
James: If you join Rob on Instagram, let him know you came from this podcast. I think that would be great for us to get an assessment of how much impact we’re having, if any.
And also, Rob, talk about, what sort of clients do you like working with, if they’re listening to this and they think you’ve got what it takes. Just to be very clear, I have no stake in your business. I have no financial incentive or reward for this episode. I’m not on a commission. I have not been paid for this.
I literally saw this paragraph. I wanted to share it with our audience, because I thought it was valuable. So with that in mind, go for it – who would you like to work with?
Rob: Sure. So if you’ve got a business that’s serving B2B, as in it has accounts receivable, accounts payable, cash or otherwise, you’re doing more than 5 million a year, and you’re finding yourself stressed, you’re lacking clarity, you’re feeling overwhelmed, I’m happy to sit down, have a chat with you and go through your business and see if I can help.
And in particular, if you’re a distressed business – so if the revenue has been ticking along, but the profits aren’t there or they’re negative, and cash flow is drying up – I can help you. This is something I love doing, is coming in and parachuting into crisis situations, and sitting down with people and helping them get both the psychological clarity they need, and then the business clarity.
Because if you feel overwhelmed, if you feel overworked, if you feel stressed, can’t figure out what’s going on. Let me read the label on the jar for you. Let me fix your golf swing or do your brain surgery. And we’ll make sure you make a lot of money off the back of it.
James: Love it. And if you’re not making $5 million a year yet, then come and see me over at SuperFastBusiness.com or SuperFastResults.com got a few courses now if you’re really just starting out. That’s been put up for you. If you’re already making 10 grand a year, you should be in SuperFastBusiness.com.
And Rob is obviously a nice guy. He spent three and a half hours talking for us for no financial reward. We’re not paying him, either.
So it’s been great. It serves you right for posting this. Did you ever in a million years imagine when you put that up in a story, no less, that it would result in this outcome?
Rob: No, and I think there’s a really interesting point here, which is long-term gains with long-term people. You and I have known each other for a few years. We catch up. We were just talking about all this context before. But if there is one thing that really sticks with me is, just keep contributing. I would never have expected that we would have turned this into three podcasts, let alone one.
And it’s been fun to go back and forth and kind of get to know each other’s experience a little better. Because even after eight years, long-term gains, long-term people.
James: Sweet. Now, is it alright if we take a screenshot of this paragraph and include it the downloadable resources for Episode 763?
Rob: Go for it, 763.
James: There you go. All right, Rob. Thank you so much, and I hope you enjoy the rest of your day.
Let James coach you here: JamesSchramko (membership).
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